Aside from being known for being a top destination for having pristine beaches with crystalline turquoise waters, Cancun has been dubbed the party capital of Mexico. There is so much hype around coming to this area for a vacation that it can sometimes be intimidating to create a little itinerary for yourself. So we put together a ‘mini bucket list’ of exciting experiences for you to consider for your Mexican Caribbean adventure!
Swim in a Cenote
A cenote, pronounced seh-NO-tay, are water-filled sinkholes that naturally occur when an underground limestone rock cave collapses in on itself and exposes the groundwater underneath. Ancient Mayan culture views cenotes as a sacred space and has used them in ceremonies for centuries. Please keep this in mind and be respectful while visiting solo, or on a tour.
As you explore these ancient waters please keep in mind that regular sunscreen is prohibited. The chemicals are dangerous for the plants and marine life so please ensure that you bring biodegradable, reef-safe sunscreen.
Other things to consider bringing:
- A Waterproof bag is always a good idea when adventuring around any type of water and natural elements.
- Waterproof camera or go pro to capture your memories forever.
- Water shoes in case the surfaces around the cenote are rough, rocky and slippery.
- A Quick dry towel.
- Your own Snorkel.
- Drinking water and a snack.
Here is a list of the top 5 cenotes near Cancun.
Diving & Snorkeling
Snorkeling or going for a dive in Cancun is so much more than just throwing on some flippers and floating around the bay- the things you find beneath the surface will blow your mind. From experienceing the vibrant array of sea creatures, seeing parts of the great barrier reef, to even exploring an underwater museum, this kind of adventure is bound to be “one for the books!”
MUSA is the largest underwater museum in the world – with its 473 sculptures at 8m underwater, it is considered the best place to dive in Isla Mujeres! These statues were created to replace the coral reefs that have been damaged or died over time in order to provide a second habitat for the biodiversity that inhabits the seabed. If diving isn’t in your strong suit – you can rent a glass-bottom boat to experience this cool place from the comfort of above water.
Not everyone is looking for that all-you-can-eat and all-you-can-drink vacation – as much fun that can be, some people are seeking rejuvenation and self-reflection. It’s incredible the level of profound healing that can happen when you put yourself in a healthy environment to do “the work”.
The word “Temāzcalli” itself translates to “house of heat”, which describes one of the main elements of this sacred ceremony – the sweat style lodge that the whole ceremony takes place in. After setting intentions and entering the igloo-shaped hut, hot volcanic rocks are placed in the center, water is then poured over it to create basically a steamy sauna, and then specific herbs are added to aid in the cleansing process.
These ancient rituals have been a huge part of the Mexican culture for over 900 years, helping people do things like:
- Prepare for battle or tournaments
- Flushing toxins
- Connect with your higher-self and spiritual guidance
- Move through emotion
- Heal from mental & physical trauma
- and much, much more.
Chichen Itza Maya Ruins
As one of the seven wonders of the world, Chichen-Itza is one of the most magical and historical places in all of Mexico to visit. Conveniently located in the beautiful Yucatan Peninsula.
Pronounced “chee-chehn eet-sah”, Chichén Itzá is a massive Mayan city that was an absolute powerhouse during its prime from around 600 AD to about 1200 AD. It was inhabited by Ancient Mayan people, whose descendants still live in this part of Mexico.
Chichén Itzá’s name translates to “mouth of the well of the Itza”, Itza translates to “enchanter of the waters” – which totally makes sense and aligns with all the nearby cenotes and underwater rivers that helped make the Yucatán Peninsula not only famous but one of the most enchanting places in the world. Chichén Itzá is also declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988. Even though it is an easy place to visit and you don’t need a guide and a tour, for a place like this sometimes it’s nice to have someone take care of all the heavy work, make sure you get the most out of your experience and teach you all the history behind it. Check out 4 guided tours here.
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